Good news for folks who have trouble parking in Pass-a-Grille.
Conure, a smart cities company, collaborated with St. Pete Beach to create ParkSmartSPB, a parking app and website that uses sensors to detect and provide live feed of parking availability on Pass-a-Grille beach. The system is part of St. Pete Beach’s Strategic Plan (Vision 2030). One of the main goals is to lead the way with technology.
“The initiative was fueled by the city’s desire to provide better information to the public regarding parking availability within the city, and as a goal to make the parking experience easier for visitors in the city,” Michelle Gonzales, director of Community Development for the City of St. Pete Beach, said.
Due to the limited number of entrances and exits, Pass-a-Grille is the guinea pig for the new system.
“We also hope that with this new technology better parking compliance is achieved since there is real time parking information – people can easily locate available space and not park on the residential streets,” Gonzales said.
Circular black sensors dot the ground, one per parking spot. Currently, the app details how many spots are available in four locations: 9th Avenue, Gulf Way South, Pass-a-Grille Way and Gulf Way North.
“As soon as the parking app gains some traction, we’re hoping to see help with the traffic flow,” St. Pete Beach’s Public Information Office Sarah Laracuente said.
If Pass-a-Grille is full, Laracuente hopes that will inspire beach goers to visit other local beach spots.
“Currently, we are piloting this technology for a year and will see how the technology has been working in the city prior to expanding it to another beach area. If we do find the pilot to be successful, the next area of expansion that will be considered is Upham Beach,” Gonzalez said.